The death toll in Italy surged past China’s death toll on Thursday, according to the Associated Press.
Meanwhile, in the U.S. the Army started making plans to set up mobile military hospitals to be placed in major cities. Other medical centers in the U.S. are setting up drive-thru testing sites.
Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said at the United Nations in New York that the world is “at war with a virus” and that “a global recession, perhaps of record dimensions, is a near certainty.”
“If we let the virus spread like wildfire — especially in the most vulnerable regions of the world – it would kill millions of people,” he said.
In Italy, which has a population of 60 million, there have been more than 3,400 deaths, about 150 more than in China, which boasts a population over 20 times larger.
However, Wuhan, the Chinese city where coronavirus first emerged, has since recorded no new infections.
Health officials have said Italy’s high death toll is because of the city’s population of elderly people. Italy has the second-oldest population in the world, and about 87 percent of its dead have been over 70 years old.
Meanwhile, Jonas Schmidt-Chanasit, a virologist at Germany’s Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine said the death rate is also because of a “collapse” of Italy’s health system.
There have also been reports of people still using public transportation and eating out in hotels in Italy’s Milan.
“Right now we need to stop all economic activity, and we need to stop the mobility of people,” said Sun Shuopeng, the leader from a delegation from the Chinese Red Cross. “All people should be staying at home in quarantine.”
In the U.S., at least 178 deaths have been recorded and infections have risen to over 11,000. In New York City, there are more than 4,000 cases.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Marco Bonfanti
Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for ChristianHeadlines.com since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and IBelieve.com. She blogs at The Migraine Runner.